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Getting started with the Swift API

Getting started with the Swift API


You can use the OpenStack APIs to generate different scripts in order to automate your actions on the Public Cloud. The OpenStack Swift client lets you interact with and manage your containers and objects.

For example you can upload files to your containers regularly in order to back them up.

This guide will help you get to grips with the OpenStack APIs so you can manage your object containers using the Python-Swiftclient.



Swift documentation

You can get the list of possible commands from the client's documentation:

admin@serveur-1:~$ swift --help

Here is the list of the main commands:

|delete|Deletes a container or objects within a container| |---| |delete|Deletes a container or objects within a container| |download|Downloads objects from containers| |list|Lists the containers for the account or the objects for a container| |post|Updates meta information for the account, container, or object. If the container is not found, it will be created automatically.| |stat|Displays information for the account, container, or object| |upload|Uploads specified files and directories to the given container| |capabilities|Retrieves capability of the proxy.| |tempurl|Generates a temporary URL for a Swift object|

For help on a specific Swift command, enter "--help" at the end of it:

admin@serveur-1:~$ swift post --help

Updates meta information for the account, container, or object.
If the container is not found, it will be created automatically.

Positional arguments:
[container] Name of container to post to.
[object] Name of object to post. Specify multiple times
for multiple objects.

You can also find the Swift client documentation on the OpenStack website

Creating a public object container

  • Create the container "container1"
admin@serveur-1:~$ swift post container1
  • Configure the access rights to make your container public
admin@serveur-1:~$ swift post --header "X-Container-Read: .r:*" container1
  • Check container configuration
admin@serveur-1:~$ swift stat container1

Account: AUTH_b3e26xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxb0ba29
Container: container1
Objects: 0
Bytes: 0
Read ACL: .r:*
Write ACL:
Sync To:
Sync Key:
Accept-Ranges: bytes
X-Trans-Id: B2210C05:8D93_052711A1:01BB_561CC9DF_1B305:30D7
X-Storage-Policy: Policy-0
Connection: close
X-Timestamp: 1444726875.27475
Content-Type: text/plain; charset=utf-8

Upload files to your container

  • Uploading the content of a local folder to a container
admin@serveur-1:~$ swift upload container1 images/


A prefix will automatically be added to your files if you send an entire folder and not a single file.

  • List a container's files
admin@serveur-1:~$ swift list container1


You can display the files with a particular prefix using the "--prefix" argument:

admin@serveur-1:~$ swift list container1 --prefix images


If the container is configured as public, you can access the file using a URL:

This URL is made up of an endpoint, which you can get from the Access and Security menu in Horizon, the name of your container and the name of your object (including the prefix).

Download files

  • Download a file:
admin@serveur-1:~$ swift download container1 text1.txt

text1.txt [auth 0.328s, headers 0.452s, total 0.453s, 0.000 MB/s]

You can download lots of files with the same prefix, using the following command:

admin@serveur-1:~$ swift download container1 --prefix images

images/OVHlogo.png [auth 0.383s, headers 0.520s, total 0.522s, 0.135 MB/s]
images/OVHSummitKeynote.jpg [auth 0.371s, headers 0.514s, total 0.559s, 2.657 MB/s]

Deleting containers or objects

  • Delete a file:
admin@serveur-1:~$ swift delete container1 text1.txt


As with downloading, you can delete lots of files using the same prefix, with the following command:

admin@serveur-1:~$ swift 
delete container1 images/*

  • Delete a container
admin@serveur-1:~$ swift delete container1


This will delete all the files in the container.

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